Coughing, chest pain and brain fog are some of the long-term symptoms sometimes found in kids. They can occur after mild infections or no initial symptoms of the COVID-19 infection. Follow-up doctor visits after children recover from the initial coronavirus infection are recommended.
There are varying estimates on how long the symptoms known as long COVID-19 occur in kids. A recent study published in the UK found about 4% of young children and teens had symptoms more than a month after getting infected. Fatigue, headaches and loss of smell were among the most common complaints among them and most were gone within 2 months.
Coughing, chest pain and brain fog are among the other long-term symptoms sometimes found in kids, and can occur even after mild infections or no initial symptoms of the COVID-19 infection.
Some studies have found higher rates of persisting symptoms than in the U.K. study, but kids are thought to be less commonly affected than adults. According to estimates, about 30% of adult COVID-19 patients develop long-term symptoms.
Experts aren't sure what causes the long-term symptoms, especially in kids. In some cases, it could reflect organ damage caused by the initial infection. It is believed that it could be a result of the virus and inflammation lingering in the body.
Kids can develop other rare problems after an initial coronavirus infection, including heart inflammation or a condition known as multisystem inflammatory syndrome, which involves fever and inflammation affecting different body parts, among various other symptoms. Affected kids generally need to be hospitalized but most of them are able to recover. Adults can experience the same situation.
The rapid spread of the highly contagious delta variant has worried some doctors about the potential for higher number of children being at the risk of long COVID-19 and these other conditions.
Because of the potential for long-term consequences, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends follow-up doctor visits after children recover from an initial coronavirus infection.
(With PTI inputs)